Nonlinear metasurface combining telecom-range intersubband transitions in GaN/AlN quantum wells with resonant plasmonic antenna arrays
We realize and investigate a nonlinear metasurface taking advantage of intersubband transitions in ultranarrow GaN/AlN multi-quantum well heterostructures. Owing to huge band offsets, the structures offer resonant transitions in the telecom window around 1.55 µm. These heterostructures are functionalized with an array of plasmonic antennas featuring cross-polarized resonances at these near-infrared wavelengths and their second harmonic. This kind of nonlinear metasurface allows for substantial second-harmonic generation at normal incidence which is completely absent for an antenna array without the multi-quantum well structure underneath. While the second harmonic is originally radiated only into the plane of the quantum wells, a proper geometrical arrangement of the plasmonic elements permits the redirection of the second-harmonic light to free-space radiation, which is emitted perpendicular to the surface.